Somewhere In Toronto / Flickr Robert DeNiro...
Somewhere In Toronto / Flickr

Actor Robert DeNiro has six bi-racial children and one of them is gay, so it stands to reason that the current administration especially appalls him. He admits to being “naive” about the two terms that Obama served, thinking that that heralded a permanent change in society. DeNiro now says, like many liberals, that he had no idea how many people were against Obama, and on a racial level. DeNiro calls Trump a racist, fascist, con artist, and huckster, among other things. The Guardian:

“He’s a con artist. He’s a huckster. He’s a scam artist. And what bothers me is that people don’t see that. I think that The Apprentice had a lot to do with that, which I never saw but once, maybe. It’s all smoke and mirrors, it’s all bullshit.”

Would he call Trump a white supremacist? “Yes,” De Niro says instantly. And what about a fascist? “I guess that’s what it leads to. If he had his way, we’d wind up in a very bad state in this country. I mean, the way I understand it, they laughed at Hitler. They all look funny. Hitler looked funny, Mussolini looked funny and other dictators and despots look funny.

De Niro is speaking just after Trump has described his longtime lawyer, Michael Cohen, as a “rat” for cooperating with federal investigators, prompting news networks to play clips from some of the actor’s greatest mobster hits, such as Goodfellas, The Godfather Part II and The Untouchables. He muses: “I mean, a mob boss calls people ‘a rat’. That means you lied and somebody snitched on you, so you did commit the crime. So that’s interesting and he makes mobsters look bad because there are mobsters who will shake your hand and keep their word. He can’t even do that.”

DeNiro garnered quite a bit of criticism from his “Fuck Trump!” outburst at last year’s Tony Awards. But he doesn’t regret it.

“I won’t do it again because that’s not the way to get things done. [But] I felt that this is something I should say because it’s basic. Trump is basic. He’s just a guy who just thinks he can rattle off his mouth and say anything. Well, I want to say the same thing to him: there are people who are going to say the same thing back to you, no matter who you are.”

DeNiro mentions that during the midterm elections Beto O’Rourke, Stacey Abrams, and Andrew Gillum caught his eye. He also says, being born during WWII, and living through Vietnam, and 9/11 that he remains optimistic that the country will pull through.  DeNiro says that one thing Trump has achieved is he has “made everybody including myself much more aware of our civic duty to stand up and make our voices heard about what’s happening in this country. We have a lot of problems that we have to work together to fix. It all sounds very noble and all that, but that’s the truth. Let’s start at home.”

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